Marketing An Ebook Online for Free [Ultimate Guide 2023]
Last updated: February 28, 2023
You’ve finally finished creating your first ebook. But while you’ve now completed a big project, its success boils down to one thing: your marketing strategy. To achieve those big sales numbers, you’ll need to come up with an elaborate way to promote your ebook. Fortunately, we know a thing or two on how to promote ebooks that generate sales, results in more email subscribers, or hits any other common goals. So, if you’re currently dreaming about how successful your book could be, it’s time to work on some blog posts, social media posts, and maybe even an ebook landing page to help make your dreams a reality.
In this article, we’re going to share several ways you can do ebook marketing so you can promote your book and reach the masses:
- Create a website/landing page
- Create a free ebook as a lead magnet
- Create a free mini online course to go along with the ebook
- Social media
- Get book promotion sites to feature your book
- Get book reviewers to review your book
- Build an email list
- Book tour
- Engage with communities online
Marketing an Ebook Online with Little-to-No-Budget in 2023
1. Create a website/landing page
Creating a website for your ebook will help you generate countless sales. By hosting your ebook on your own website, you’ll get to earn a larger percentage of the sale. After all, platforms like Amazon take a commission off every ebook sale you make. Plus, having your own website will allow you to create another asset you fully own.
Payhip is a digital products website builder that allows you to sell ebooks. You can choose a Free Forever plan, which is subscription-free, so you can build a website without any monthly payments, only a 5% transaction fee. On Payhip, you’ll be able to create a landing page for your ebook, create blog content for your website, and more. Learn how to sell ebooks in three simple steps in this ultimate guide from Payhip.
Selling ebooks with Payhip is great because of its Instant File delivery, which sends the customer your ebook the second they place the order on your site. Plus, there’s PDF stamping on all ebooks sold via Payhip to prevent customers from sharing your e-book with others. You can also set download limits, add multiple files per order, and if you’re in Europe or the UK, there’s even VAT management to help you when selling internationally.
Join over 130,000 sellers who have launched their online businesses with Payhip
2. Create a free ebook as a lead magnet
Once you’ve signed up for Payhip and created a few landing pages, you can do some inbound marketing. For example, you can create a free ebook as a lead magnet for your paid ebook (also known as reader magnet), especially if you’re promoting to get new readers and build a bigger audience.
On your landing page, create a free lead magnet ebook. It doesn’t need to be long. Something short and sweet and under 10 pages could work very well and isn’t too time consuming. But it needs to be just as enticing as your ebook without spoiling anything from your new book. If you’re paid ebook is a recipe ebook, you might create a lead magnet that has 5 additional recipes, a meal plan, or chef-level cooking techniques.
Your lead magnet should be used to collect email addresses to help you better promote your paid ebook. However, you could also include a link to your lead magnet as a bonus offer for your paid ebook.
3. Create a free mini online course to go along with the ebook
As an author, you’re an expert on the subject you write about. While readers love ebooks, not everyone consumes content in the same way. Creating a free mini online course (or even a paid online course) could be a good way to boost your earnings for your ebook. Plus, tips like this can really boost your digital marketing effectors and the number of leads.
An online course will allow people to see your personality shine, which can build excitement for your written content. Keep it relevant to the same topic. But add unique content in the course that isn’t in your book content.
As mentioned earlier, Payhip is a site builder for digital products. And you can easily create an online course
4. Social media
Your ebook marketing plan won’t be complete without the help of social media. The key to making a big splash as a new author is to build a personal brand. If you’re already active on social media, great! You’ll be promoting your ebook with ease using your account. However, if you aren’t active on social media, it’s time to get started.
The platforms where authors tend to generate the most success with are TikTok and Instagram. When creating content for these platforms, you won’t want every post you make to be about your new e book. Instead, you’ll want to provide value that’s related to your book. For instance, if your new ebook is a romance novel, you might create content on social media on how to find love, build a lasting relationship, or move on from your ex. That way, you’re attracting the type of person who’s interested in reading books about romance.
Once your ebook is published in the wild, you can also run Facebook Ads on your ebook landing page. But aside from Facebook, you can also run a campaign on Google as well, depending on your niche. The targeting options on both platforms are abundant, so you can create a very clearly defined target audience of people who would be interested in spending their money to learn from you.
Social media is definitely more of a pre launch activity to try. So, start building a following as soon as you can. Social media promotion techniques change a lot with time, so make changes as you learn and adapt to each platform.
Having a pre-existing blog that’s growing in popularity can be one of the best ways to promote an ebook. People who’ve spent years creating blog posts on their website not only have an audience ready to buy their book, but they also already follow along and are hooked to the author’s writing style. A book launch without an existing audience can take a lot of hard work and time. But mostly, it’s gonna cost you. If you’ve been an active blogger for a few years now, selling an ebook makes sense for your brand. Your fans will be excited to read more of your content, since they’ve already learned so much from you.
Another cool thing about having a blog is that most bloggers build up email lists. Having a call-to-action on your blog posts with an email opt-in form can really help drive those ebook sales up. Email marketing and blogging go hand in hand. The blog brings in the traffic, while the email opt-in form allows you to remarket your ebooks to your audience.
But if you haven’t started a blog before writing your ebook, don’t fret. You can always start your blog today. This will only help make future ebook pre launch activities so much easier for you down the road. You’ll get better at understanding your target audience through your blog, so you can create better ebook content with time.
6. Get book promotion sites to feature your book
You can make your ebook land a ton of downloads by using third-party promotion sites. There are countless sites that promote new ebooks. For instance, you can try different platforms like BookBub, Bargain Booksy, and BookSends to be featured on their websites that get thousands of visitors.
If one of the places you sell your ebook is on Amazon, you can also use Amazon’s Free Book Promotions tool. The e-book will need to be on KDP, and you’ll be able to offer it for free for up to five days, every 90 days. While you won’t get paid doing this, you’ll likely get tons of downloads and reviews. You’ll be able to use those reviews to help you boost your ranking on Amazon, so that you can ultimately sell more ebooks.
You can also pay to promote your new ebook on popular sites like Best Book Monkey, LitNuts, and BookTrib. These platforms among many others allow you to pay a small fee to be featured on their email list, where book lovers subscribe to discover new affordable ebooks they can purchase.
7. Get book reviewers to review your book
A key marketing strategy to promote your ebook is to get book reviews. This can be a touchy subject because people often want book reviews fast, so they’ll pay for reviews, which can put their credibility at risk. So, avoid going on sites like Fiverr to pay people to read your ebook to give “fake reviews.”
While getting your first few reviews is tough, it’s not an impossible task. One of the ways you can get organic reviews is by giving your book away for free. Giving people a chance to read your book and enjoy it will likely result in them leaving a review, especially if they read on a Kindle device or have an active GoodReads account.
Asking for a review on the last page of your e-book could also be an effective marketing strategy for generating book reviews. Most of the time, people will write a review if you ask for it. It’s all about how you ask. You could write a message like “Hey, hope you enjoyed this book. If you did, feel free to leave a 5-star review on Good Reads, Amazon, or on my website. If you didn’t enjoy the book, you can e-mail me at [insert email address here] to share your feedback.”
Alternatively, if you seek Amazon e-book reviews, you can reach out to Amazon’s Top Customer Reviewers to share your e-book with them and get a review for the book you’re promoting. Reviewers who are also readers will be your best bet, so look for reviewers who review books a lot.
8. Build an email list
We hinted at the importance of an email list in the blogging section, but email marketing is so crucial for launching and promoting ebooks. After all, email lists are assets you fully own. When you build an email list, you’ll have access to remarket to your user base for years to come. You can transfer your email list from one platform to another with ease, unlike social media where you can’t transfer your followers from one platform to the next.
Marketing an ebook with an email list is easy. You can create campaigns when your ebook is available for pre-order, so you can generate some early buzz. By sending an email out to pre-order your ebook, you’ll be able to increase the sales on your first day when the ebook is officially live. That elevated ranking will allow you to capitalize on a higher rank on the day you launch, so you can get even more customers for your ebook, without needing to do much more promotion.
9. Book tour
While there are many free ways to do ebook marketing, spending some money can be helpful to generate more ebook sales. For instance, a book tour is a great way to connect with fans, generate more book sales, and is a good strategy for a new author looking for more readers.
Upfront costs will include airfare, hotel, and food expenses. However, the number of leads you can get from traveling around your country or continent can help you boost your ebook sales.
You might want to connect with an agent who will book a tour for you. A tour might include stops at conferences in your niche, bookstore signings, and events with big but relevant crowds. For example, if you write books about business, attending conferences about marketing, finance, or business could be a great place for you to do book signings. People will buy your book for a chance to get it autographed.
Connecting with your fans is a great way to build relationships, too. When you meet the readers of your ebooks, they’ll be so excited to meet you and get to know you. Having a positive experience with you will allow your business selling ebooks to grow. So brainstorm ways to connect with fans in-person and online.
10. Engage with communities online
There are so many ways to connect with communities online to help you promote your ebook. A popular digital marketing strategy is to engage with communities online. For example, you can join Facebook groups (or create your own) and sub-Reddits to connect with people in your niche and build a name for yourself.
One of the key tips to remember when engaging with online communities is to avoid selling yourself. Often, people will post about their ebook in a direct sales approach. These types of posts typically don’t go over very well with people. A soft sell approach will often work better. Focus on providing value and subtly telling people about your ebook.
You can also become a guest on a podcast, write a guest post for a third-party blog, or create video content for a course platform. Partnering with communities that you don’t own will allow you to grow. However, do try to build relationships, so that you can grow bigger long-term.
For authors who have never attempted to promote ebooks online, marketing your ebooks might seem like an overwhelming task. But remember to start small and you will slowly build the routing of executing one or more of the ebook marketing ideas above.
Remember that you don’t need a large budget to start marketing your ebooks. Platforms such as Payhip provides tons of free marketing tools as well as an entire platform where you can build your author website for free.